March 24, 2020: US Death Toll

Just to keep track of the nonsense that has wrecked our economy and generally made our politicians run around as if their fool heads were on fire, each day I publish the corona virus total death toll in the US based upon the latest data I can find.  A single death is an immense tragedy if you love the person.  However, we are not talking about love, but rather public policy, which should always involve a sober analysis of risk and cost.  Please recall that in a bad normal flu year our death toll in the US can be as high as 90,000.


Note this will be a total death toll since the beginning of this bad farce, and not a daily toll.  As of the beginning of March 24 the death toll is 515.

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  1. Agree 100%. What we have here is a mental illness pandemic brought on by selfishness which has blinding.. By trying to protect ourselves we are killing the economy. Call the nonsense off and get back to work. The deaths resulting are collateral damage in this war to keep madness from overcoming us.

  2. Encouragement to let those who can work from home do so, and reminding folks that they’re supposed to be washing their hands ALL the time, and most especially letting people keep their sick kids home without having to take a day off and haul them to the doctor are all reasonable steps for a normal flu season.

    Folks sitting at home with no income for three weeks because pneumonia kills people isn’t.

  3. Track the mortality rate each day (%) if you are so inclined. I suspect it will fall as more testing is done.

    If the death toll says low, one can say, “See, told you; it was because of all the preventive action.” But a % is a %, so you can compare more directly to seasonal flu or other pandemics like H1N1 in 2009.

  4. One problem, it seems to me,is that we’ll never know if the measures were took were good enough or too much. If it becomes as bad as they keep saying it will, or worse, they can always say we didn’t do enough. If it ends up fizzling, they can say it’s because we took such radical measures. I see no way in which, when all is said and done, we can determine ‘it ended up not being so bad, therefore we overreacted.’

  5. For me, the death total compared to a typical flu outburst says it all. To justify wrecking our economy, and with all the human misery that entails, a far higher body count would be needed. The 500,000 for the Spanish flu comes to mind. This hogwash was sold on the basis of hysterical claims that millions would die in the US unless draconian steps were taken.

  6. I’m with you Dave, but take solace in this thought:
    if/when it fizzles out, and if the death count is the same or less than a really bad flu year, Trump will run for reelection, in part, on being the guy who saved the country from the most serious public health threat since the Spanish flu (or maybe even the Black Death!). Then you’ll have the pleasure of watching this very same media, turn on a dime and dismiss this whole thing as a minor event blown totally out of proportion.
    I figure at that point, their failure will be complete.

  7. News out of Italy: (1) deaths dip for another day (2) at least one source saying number of infected could be 10X reported figures.
    Q: If I multiply the denominator of a fraction by 10X without changing the numerator, doesn’t that make my number smaller?

  8. Notably, Korea* is where they’re actually attempting to test EVERYONE.

    I suspect, when they are able to go back and test their “flu deaths” from before January, they will find a slower ramp-up of Wuhan flu.


    *explaining, in case folks wonder– the Norks want to style themselves as the true Korea. That news story about discovering the cave of the kirin a few years back was about this– to style lil’Kim as the true emperor, by styling the death pit he’s created as the true seat of Korea.
    This is obviously false, but the mad midgets persist. So just as I shorthand the United States of America to America, I shorthand the Republic of Korea to Korea. They’ve dealt with warlords that have delusions of legitimacy before.

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